NASA starts at page 97.
It’s the beginning of the end for SLS. NASA wants to do Europa on a “commercial vehicle,” plans for Block 1B are “deferred,” and they propose commercial providers for getting to and from the moon itself, which means that SLS has nothing to do except the Gateway, and it can’t do the Gateway without the new upper stage planned for Block 1B.
It will be interesting to see the Congressional response. One thing it does do is continue to flow the wasteful funding for Block 1 to the right zip codes, so Congress may not care. Culberson is gone now, and if this budget passes with that wording, it would end the legislative requirement to use SLS for Europa.
[Update a few minutes later]
This is an OMB proposal. Bridenstine had to provide lip service to SLS to get confirmed. I wonder what he’ll say when he gets called on the carpet by Congress?
An interview with Elon.
Not mention? Whether or not humans can procreate in 0.38 gees. Because no one knows, and Elon doesn’t seem to care.
My buddy Michelle Hanlon was on NPR yesterday, and the LA Times has an approving editorial.
An interesting piece by Michelle Hanlon. This is a corollary with space property right. If some places are off limits, it implies that most others are not.
This seems a little overblown to me, certainly currently.
I agree that it’s a special place in terms of radio silence, and would be a great location for very large radiotelescopes. But I don’t know many people who would want to live there, and never see the home planet. And they could do comm via lasers — no need to pollute the local “air” waves with spurious RF communications.
They may be able to dig wells. I wonder how much purification it will require, given the per
manganchlorates. Also, the well will have to have a heater to melt the ice, I suspect.
[For some reason I always write “permanganates” when I mean perchlorates]
Congratulations to Alan Stern and the New Horizons team. The flyby appears to have been a success, we now know that it’s bilobal, and it didn’t have a light curve because the spacecraft was (coincidentally) coming toward its spin axis. Not enough data yet to know if it has a 15-hour or 30-hour period, but we’ll start getting high-res pictures tomorrow. It will take two year to download all the data, though, to give similar resolution that we got for Pluto.
[Update a while later]
High(er) res tomorrow, not high-res.
For those into Mars, Bob Zimmerman has a post up with some speculation.